The Borno state government announced on Wednesday that it would begin the confiscation of seven properties belonging to United Nations agencies that are domiciled in the state for tax evasion.
The executive chairman of the Borno State Board of Internal Revenue Service (BO-IRS), Mohammed Alkali, said so on Wednesday during a briefing to reporters in Maiduguri.
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Affected properties are World Health Organization (WHO), World Food Program (WFP), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) with operational offices in Maiduguri.
“It should be noted that the above-mentioned organizations are generally exempt from paying tax on their operating funds. They are however mandated by law under the provisions of the Personal Income Tax Act, CAP P8 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004 to remit to the state government what is known as PAYE (Pay As You Earn) with withholding tax (WHT) for their staff and contracting individuals and companies respectively.
“But unfortunately, since January 2021, all efforts to get them to respond positively to the request have proven unsuccessful, thus forcing the BO-IRS to serve them with a 30-day notice of seizure which is due to expire on February 24, 2022 as previously mentioned. .
“This department will then trigger its enforcement powers using legitimate means to seize the assets of the agencies involved,” Alkali said.